James “Jamie” Spears said in court filings late Tuesday that he does not have control over his daughter’s reproductive choices. Those claims, as reported by the New York Times, stand in stark contrast to recent on-the-record testimony from Britney Spears herself earlier this month.
The beloved pop icon shocked the nation on June 23rd when she publicly spoke out against her 13-year-long conservatorship for the first time. In a lengthy statement before a Los Angeles probate court, the famous singer recounted a regime of forced drug usage, strict controls over her daily life that have left her mentally and emotionally spent, and at times being forced to perform against her will as part of a court-ordered system that she likened to “sex trafficking.”
“Anything that happened to me had to be approved by dad,” Spears told Superior Court of Los Angeles County Judge Brenda Penny.
“My dad and anyone involved in this conservatorship — and my management who played a huge role in punishing me when I said ‘no’ — ma’am, they should be in jail,” Spears said later on.
One of the foremost allegations leveled against her father was the claim that he exercises so much control over her that she is being forced to maintain an intrauterine device that she doesn’t want.
“I have an IUD in my body right now that won’t let me have a baby and my conservators won’t let me go to the doctor to take it out,” Spears told the court. “I feel ganged up on. I feel bullied and I feel left out and alone. I want to be able to get married and have a baby.”
The singer’s father flatly disputed those allegations, according to The New York Times.
“Mr. Spears is simply not involved in any decisions related to Ms. Spears’s personal care or medical or reproductive issues,” attorneys for Jamie Spears wrote. “Mr. Spears is unable to hear and address his daughter’s concerns directly because he has been cut off from communicating with her.”
Jamie Spears long served as his daughter’s only conservator — originally at her request but in recent years increasingly against her will. Late last year, while failing to have his status revoked entirely, Britney won a victory on the financial front by having financial firm Bessemer Trust appointed co-conservator and corporate fiduciary. Early this year, the trust’s role over her finances was expanded in a loss to her father. Jamie Spears has maintained some level of control over Britney’s personal care along with care manager Jodi Montgomery.
The extent of that control still exercised over his daughter’s care and health, however, is now a point of some contention.
In one of the filings obtained by the Times, Jamie Spears’s attorneys argued Montgomery had been “fully in charge of Ms. Spears’s day-to-day personal care and medical treatment” since September 2019.
Lauriann Wright, an attorney for Montgomery, issued a statement on Wednesday that cast her as a “tireless advocate” for Britney Spears.
From that report:
Ms. Wright pointed to Ms. Montgomery’s role as a “a neutral decision-maker when there are complex family dynamics” and said Ms. Spears’s “choice to marry and to start a family have never been impacted by the conservatorship while Ms. Montgomery has been conservator of the person.”
She added that Ms. Montgomery looked forward to “setting forth a path for termination of the conservatorship.”
Jamie Spears, for his part, also used the court filings to call for an investigation into the allegations made by his daughter in open court.
“[I]t is critical that the Court confirm whether or not Ms. Spears’s testimony was accurate in order to determine what corrective actions, if any, need to be taken,” one of the filings said. “It is also imperative for the proper functioning of conservatorship proceedings before this Court that all parties be provided a full and fair opportunity to respond to allegations and claims asserted against them.”
[image via VALERIE MACON/AFP/Getty Images]
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